In our last post we talked about “la castanyada”, a Catalan tradition which we celebrate for Halloween. This time we would like to talk about the “Caga tió”, a Christmas log that poops (yes, poops!) presents for everyone who sing to him on the 24th of December night. The Christmas “Tió de Nadal” is a log or tree stump standing on stick legs with a very happy painted face at one end and wearing a red Catalan barretina hat. The Caga Tió even has a blanket to keep it warm at night.
The amount and quality of presents that he poops depends on how good you have been during the year and how much food (normally fruit) you feed him during the time he is cared at your home, normally by the children, from the 8th December until Christmas Eve on 24th December.
Then, when the 24th December arrives, it is time to put him close to the fireplace (in case you have one), and the children sing the “Caga Tió” song at the same time that they hit the log with a stick. After singing for him they leave the room to pray for presents at the same time that the family have a look to the “Caga Tió” to keep him there.
The presents are normally candies, sweets and some gifts. The big presents are reserved for the 6th of January, under the Tree and brought for the Three kings. When the log has nothing left to “poo”, it finishes the deed with a poop.
Here you have a video with Kate McKinnon, who explains us a little bit more about our “Caga Tió”:
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!